Ecommerce which stands for electronic commerce, is a form of conducting business over the Internet by using online transactions to buy and sell either products or services. The creation and development of electronic commerce is directly a result of the evolution and spread of the Internet. Over the years e-commerce has seen explosive growth and an even brighter future.

In this new age of the Internet, nothing beats the convenience that e-commerce has brought people all over the world. Not only are they able to find just about anything their hearts desire online, they can also compare online retailers to find the best deal on the same product. Consumers are no longer limited to what's available outside their doorstep, they have access to things halfway across the world. There is also no need to make a trip to a store, ecommerce allows consumers to buy anything they want 24 hours a day no matter where they are.

Fortunately in recent years more and more small businesses are starting online stores as well, because the barrier to entry decreased dramatically due to the development of all-in-one ecommerce solutions. Now retail businesses both big and small are able to expose their products to millions of people on the Internet, which if marketed properly could dramatically increase profits for the business.

Effective eCommerce Websites must be easy-to-use, appealing and process requests quickly; offering consumers what they want. Good eCommerce design combines the three most important Website elements: appearance, organization and functionality. An attractive form, with solid function, uses up-to-date technology to optimize the customer's buying experience. Back office functions should be performed behind-the-scenes.

An effective eCommerce site merges industry goals with specific store goals. General business goals include the following: advertise the store's best products, communicate important information (contact phone numbers) and strategically place keywords for Search Engine Optimization (SEO). Specific company goals emphasize the store's products.

A wise businessman knows that eCommerce is online business - leverage Internet advantages with traditional business advantages. Customer satisfaction should be an important goal. The most successful eCommerce sites understand how their customers think and know what they want; answering questions before they are asked.

The first page must be professional-looking, interesting and attractive - keeping the customer's attention. The Website appearance should use color, typeface and graphics (within industry standards) to communicate to the visitor. Fresh, custom eCommerce Web designs help individualize the store's website. The text must retain interest: brief headlines, short paragraphs and beautiful photographs.

Most Web surfers have very short attention spans. An effective Website front-loads the most important information and best products to the first page. Grocery stores place candy so children can see it; the effective eCommerce Website highlights products through optimum placement in multiple easy-to-find locations.

A good Website provides new product information. Product information should be short, sweet and descriptive. Having positive customer testimonials helps.

An effective eCommerce Website guides the visitor to the best pages step-by-step. Primary content should only be one click away. A "call-to-action" leads the visitor to important content.

The most effective eCommerce Websites transform "visitors" into high quality "customers", targeting ready-to-buy traffic. The site should leverage limited space to "up sell" and "cross sell" merchandise.

An effective eCommerce Website provides a customer-friendly shopping cart, simple checkout and sensible payment procedure. Customer service should be prompt, with an easily accessible phone number. Shipping procedures should be simple.

Important information includes a privacy statement and security guarantee.

Affiliation, with the Better Business Bureau or another commerce organization, builds up credibility and trust.

The Website should follow a basic understandable organization; Microsoft Windows is successful because everyone is familiar and comfortable with the "window" concept.

Navigation should be simple, logical and consistent.

Good eCommerce Website designs use standard Cascading Style Sheets (CSS), sensible tags and clean code for a well-organized interface. Logical links and a website "Search" capability are important.

The effective eCommerce Website is prominently ranked on search engines. The Web developer should maximize keyword placement and density. Compare competitor search engine rankings.

"Back office" maintenance, such as uploading content, should be efficient.

Once a website is completed, the effective eCommerce Website markets, advertises and promotes its website, so that people will find it. Establishing e-mail marketing with blogs keeps the site relevant.

The most effective eCommerce Websites maximizes appearance, organization and functionality to make sure the customer is ultimately satisfied. Satisfied customers make businesses successful.

The goal of your ecommerce website is to sell your product or service online so it must be designed around that main goal. That means your product or service must be presented in a way that makes it attractive to customer s and in a way that all the common questions and objections are answered. If you have multiple products then they should be organised and presented in a way that makes sense and makes them easily found by your customers. If you sell big ticket items then you should make sure your website includes compelling sales copy to allow your website to actively "sell" your products just as an actual salesperson would in a face to face sale.

characteristics of e commerce websites :-

1. The Design Style Matches the Products
2. Shopping Cart, Login Box And Search Box
3. Featured Products
4. The Design Does Not Overpower the Products
5. Show The Advantages Of Your Products
6. Clear Logo
7. Phone Numbers And Online Chats
8. Store Finder
9. Trustmarks
10. Newsletter Subscription
11. Related product
12. Product Zoom
14. Good Navigation
15. Easy Checkout
16. Effective, Accurate Product Photos
17. Showcases the Most Popular Products
18. Good Payment Gateway
19. Privacy Policy
20. Good Return Policy
21. Delivery Information
22. News & Events
23. Social Media Presence